This year marks the 50th anniversary of what must surely be regarded as one of the most beautiful Ferraris ever made—the Dino. Named in honor of Enzo’s son who designed the V6 engine used in the car and who sadly died at the age of just 24, it was designed to be a more affordable sports car capable of taking on the Porsche 911. Produced between 1968 – 1976, it was branded as ‘Dino’ to differentiate it from the more expensive V12 and flat 12 models, however in 1976, the term “Dino” was retired in favor of full Ferrari branding.
Designed by Leonardo Fiorovanti at Pininfarina, the car originally came about following Enzo Ferrari’s desire to race with the Dino V6 Engine in the Formula Two category, which was introduced in 1967. Ferrari however, could not meet the required build of 500 production cars and so asked Fiat to produce a sports car using the V6 engine and so the Fiat Dino was born.
Road-going, mid-engined sports cars were a rare sight in the mid-’60s and it took the launch in 1966 of the mid-engined Lamborghini Miura, to prompt an initially hesitant Enzo Ferrari into allowing the team at Pininfarina to build a mid-engined concept for the 1965 Paris Motor Show and the Dino was born.
Sitting proudly on the South Lawn of Blenheim Palace, in a Class celebrating “50 years of the Dino” on August 30-September 1, will be some fine examples of this beautiful mid-engined, rear-drive sports car. From 1968 and with only 152 built and all in left-hand drive, the Ferrari 206 GT was and is a very rare car indeed. Chassis 00152 was the 1stof only five examples ever imported into the UK. Ordered by Colonal Ronnie Hoare himself in Arancio Tipo PF/Rosso Dino. The car arrived in the UK from Milan on Octobe 16th. The legendary guitarist, Eric Clapton became the car’s second owner in May 1970. It was the ﬁrst car he ever purchased. As noted in his autobiography he unfortunately crashed the car after a few months, while returning home after spending the evening with Pattie Boyd who, at the time, was married to Beatle George Harrison! Later on in life, in 2016, following a full restoration, ‘Layla’ as she is affectionately known after the famous Clapton song was granted Ferrari Classiche certiﬁcation.
Another Dino with a famous name in the owner’s log book is chassis 04510, a 1972 Dino 246 GT which was owned by Peter Noon, front-man of the world-famous Herman’s Hermits, Peter Noon. Noon so desperately wanted a metallic purple Dino and so decided to have the original colour changed almost immediately from Argento Auteuil to Viola Dino Metalizzato. The car has retained this stunning colour ever since. It too achieved Ferrari Classiche certification in July 2016 and then went on to win its class of European Grand Tourers, at Salon Privé, in September 2016 and was honored to achieve the title of “The 100 point Dino”.
Other entries include a US-imported 246 GT built in 1970, and finished in Rosso Chiaro, a pair of 246 GTs built in 1972 and the latest 246 GT, whose 1stowner was the Earl of Candor of Nairn, Scotland, a 1973 246 GT which has undergone a full restoration by renowned Ferrari specialists, Barkaways.
“Aside from being one the most beautiful cars ever produced, the Dino was a significant moment in history as it was the first road-going sports car they produced”, commented Concours Chairman, Andrew Bagley. “It paved the way for Ferrari to become the brand it is today, producing some of the most inspirational, evocative and technologically advanced cars currently available. We’re all looking forward to seeing this wonderful collection of vibrantly-coloured Dino’s on the Blenheim Palace lawns this year, with world-wide historian Matthias Bartz in charge of the onerous task of judging”
Other classic Ferrari models on display elsewhere within the Chubb Concours, will include a 1965 275 GTB, 1 of only eleven RHD shortnoses ever produced, a 1972 365 GTB4 Spyder, 1 of the official hundred and twenty one Spyders produced by Ferrari, a 1965 275 GTS, a 1969 365 GTC, a 1961 250 GTE, a 1964 250 GT/L Lusso, a 1978 512BB ‘Koenig’and a super-rare 1964 250 LM.